Five teams shortlisted to transform Rail Corridor

Five teams shortlisted to transform Rail Corridor
The Rail Corridor is a 24km-long route which stretches from Woodlands to Tanjong Pagar.

Five teams made up of local and international architects are in the running to transform part of Singapore's Rail Corridor.

In March, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) called for proposals for a masterplan and concept for the land.

The 24km-long route, which stretches from Woodlands to Tanjong Pagar, was previously land used by Malaysia's KTM railway before it was returned to Singapore in 2011.

In total, 64 teams, including tie-ups between local and international firms, sent in submissions in March and April.

The URA announced the five shortlisted yesterday.

They include a tie-up between local firm DP Architects and Dutch design and landscaping firm West 8.

Another shortlisted team comprised local company MKPL Architects and China-based Turenscape International. The other teams featured firms from Hong Kong, Japan and the United States that are partnering Singapore architects.

Director for the Centre for Sustainable Asian Cities at the National University of Singapore, Dr Malone-Lee Lai Choo - a member of the evaluation panel - said: "We want the Corridor to be an outstanding urban asset and are therefore open to innovative concepts... ideas that demonstrate freshness of approach and potentially exceptional design qualities that will enhance our urban landscape."

The teams have until Aug 21 to come up with detailed designs for a concept and masterplan for the Rail Corridor. These will be on display in a public exhibition in October and November.

One of the shortlisted teams will eventually get to work on the preliminary design for a 4km-long stretch of the Rail Corridor, between the former Bukit Timah Railway Station and the Hillview area.

Landmarks along this stretch include two steel truss bridges across Bukit Timah Road, Dunearn Road and Upper Bukit Timah Road next to Rail Mall.

Mr Siew Man Kok, 53, chairman and director of MKPL Architects, said: "We are in the midst of a competition so we cannot reveal our plans, but you can expect something very interesting.

"The Rail Corridor is a unique project because it is a rustic strip of land that runs through Singapore, in such a big contrast to the rest of it."

This article was first published on May 21, 2015.
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